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Consumer

Are Consumers Really Concerned About Savings?

by Luke Landes
Savings piggy bank

A survey released by Chase today concluded that 74 percent of Americans are concerned about having enough money in savings, but only 34 percent have increased their savings since the economic downturn. There’s more to the survey, but this fact alone raises more than enough questions to consider for an entire day. What does it […]

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Individualized Coupons Aid Price Discrimination

by Luke Landes
Grocery store

I’m not a fan of allowing companies to track every purchasing decision I make, but I’ve sacrificed some of my expectations for privacy in return for convenience. I use my credit card for most purchases, and over the years, credit card issuers could have created a database with my transaction history and could theoretically use […]

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Capital One to Pay $210 Million Including Refunds and Penalties

by Luke Landes
Capital One

The Consumer Financial Protection Bureau struck Capital One hard this week. The consumer protection agency has found that the credit card company improperly marketed add-on products to its customers. Because of this behavior, Capital One has agreed to pay refunds to 2.5 million customers totaling about $150 million, in addition to a $25 million penalty […]

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Credit Card Users May Pay an Additional Fee

by Luke Landes
Credit cards

When retailers and credit card issuers argue about fees, does the consumer win? The consumer is generally ignored in these discussions. Businesses are controlling the dialogue. Businesses, particularly small businesses that rely on profit margins more than volume, were successful in getting regulators to restrict “swipe” or interchange fees. The fees credit card transaction processing […]

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Best Mark Interco Mystery Shopping Scam

by Luke Landes
Best Mark Interco Mystery Shopping Scam Letter

Somehow, my name and address found its way on a list of potential suckers. Some company out there thought I would be gullible, falling for an obvious financial scam. A few days ago, I received a letter and check for almost $3,000 in the mail. I wasn’t expecting this delivery, so my suspicions were high […]

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Stop Facebook From Using Your Information for Advertising

by Luke Landes
Facebook

I generally don’t buy clothing that displays noticeable branding. I’m not completely immune from allowing my body to be used as a billboard, however. Although I don’t wear shirts emblazoned with “GAP” across the front, someone who checks me out from the back might see a Lee or Levi’s label. Some shirts might have a […]

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Back-to-School Saturday: You Know, For Kids

by Luke Landes
Aeropostale - Teen Shopping

November’s Black Friday has been has been around for decades, but it’s only recently that it became the crazed shopping event resulting in deaths due to shopper stampedes. Online retailers invented Cyber Monday to bring some of the hype associated with brick-and-mortar retail locations to the internet. Don’t get me wrong; both “holidays” provide opportunities […]

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Repair Cafe: Bring Your Broken Doodads and Gadgets

by Luke Landes
Broken Toaster

We live in an era of cheap, disposable goods. My closet full of clothing, much of it rarely worn, even though I sort through my wardrobe about once a year to eliminate items I no longer need, is a good indicator of this situation. For a good period when I was a kid, I wore […]

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Consumers Want Easier Online Payments

by Luke Landes
MasterCard credit card

Yes, it’s frustrating to need to reach for my wallet and type in my credit card number every time I want to complete a purchase online. According to a recent MasterCard and Harris Interactive survey, 58 percent of consumers agree with me. Consumers even abandon their online shopping carts when the check-out process requires too […]

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Sprint in $300 Million Tax Fraud Lawsuit

by Luke Landes

In order to offer better prices to customers, Sprint has allegedly under-collected and underpaid New York State sales taxes by $100 million. If the Attorney General’s allegations are true, Sprint could end up owing the state government as much as $300 million or more due to underpayment penalties. Sprint is denying the charges, claiming they’ve […]

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